Water-Related News

Something in the Water: How the government failed one Lee County community

This story was supposed to have a happy ending. More than two years ago, The News-Press learned the people of Charleston Park, a community of a few hundred in rural eastern Lee County, identified safe drinking water as their top environmental health concern and began to follow the process as health officials explored solutions.

Many residents rely on contaminated well water flowing into their homes. Much of Charleston Park does not have tap water that's fit to drink.

To aggravate this: There is no place to buy water. The community of about 100 homes sits about two miles from the closest place to buy water, a dollar store, which opened in the past year. A grocery store is nine miles away.

There is no routine public transportation. Not everyone has cars. The median household income is about $16,000.

In 2015, officials met in hopes of resolving the problem that’s been on the government’s radar for decades. How did good intentions dissolve into giving up?